A survey ship sailed into the Cypriot port of Limassol to start preparatory work for an ExxonMobil-Qatar Petroleum natural gas exploratory drilling in Cyprus’ exclusive economic Zone (EEZ).
Cyprus’ Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis said the ship “will carry out an archaeological survey to make sure that no antiquities are located in the area of the drilling”.
A second ship will follow to make an environmental survey immediately afterwards.
Both surveys are needed for issuing a license for the actual drilling, scheduled for October.
“These surveys were made in the past without attracting any attention, but this time they obtained significance because of Turkey’s military action which prevented ENI’s drilling in block 3,” Lakkotrypis said.
He added that ENI’s failed attempt as a result of Turkey’s action “was a bad development” but the drilling was only postponed.